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Microfilm Whimsy

Last year one of our microfilm reader/scanners bit the dust, and we know that our ancient analog reader/printer is one service call away from the junk yard. And oddly enough, our microfilm gets fairly regular use here, so being down to one machine was going to be a pinch. So now, as of last week, we have a new machine.

Our dear old T-Rex
Gemini wasn’t exactly this, but it was a lot like this. (Image from here.

This means that we had to come up with a name for our machine, of course. We’ve been naming our machines for at least the last decade when a former colleague said that our first reader scanner should be called Gemini, because it looked like twins.

Then I said our ancient analog machine should be called T-Rex, because it’s ancient but powerful and a fan favorite.


My first year here, we got a fancy new machine that had a silhouette that reminded me of Yoda meditating on a rock, so we called it Yoda. This machine was also mostly a mystery to all who tried to use it, not least because it had no less than 7 on/off switches. Plus a light made to look like a mouse, but wasn’t a mouse, and was actually completely unnecessary unless you were looking at opaque microcards. But nobody could ever remember that. So being simultaneously powerful and utterly mysterious also fit with its name.

You can see Yoda sitting on a rock, right? Right??

Time passed. At some point Gemini was beyond support. And eventually we got a new machine.

Our next machine reminded one of our campus IT folks of the character Crazy Frog, and the name stuck.

And now, as of last week, we have this new machine which looks almost exactly like Crazy Frog, but it isn’t Crazy Frog, and it will be taking over for both deceased Yoda and (eventually) T-Rex. So we spent some quality time this week naming it, and we ended up merging ideas from another campus IT person and from a librarian in my department. The new name? Yandu-Bot. It’s a robot version of a Yandusaurus. It merges the old and the new. It’s way more automated and powerful than our other machines. And as an added bonus, because it has the letters Y and D in that order in its name, the desktop systems administrator doesn’t have to make any changes to the computer and related systems it’s hooked up to, which all have the letters YD for Yoda.

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  1. Amanda St John Amanda St John

    I am such a fan of naming library equipment. The first iMacs I put into service for our library are Lucy and Donald. I thoroughly appreciated that a Twin Cities college named their Macs after Peanuts characters–Lucy was always my favorite.

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